Long time no blog. I’ve been updating my Instagram almost daily throughout January whilst I’ve been away (see pictures here)… but unfortunately I didn’t manage to blog out here as much as I planned to. If you didn’t know – I escaped the cold and “snow” of England to visit Nigeria for a couple of weeks. It’s been 8 long years since I’ve been back to Nigeria, so it still feels pretty surreal to be here. I’m having a restful break away from home and in all honesty, I’m really going to miss this place when I leave in 5 days. Before I leave however, I want to just writeeeee. Enjoy my ramblings 🙂
There’s a lot going on around me, I’ll set the scene for you. I’m currently sitting out on the balcony which overlooks our compound and a busy neighbourhood in Agege, Lagos (pictured above in the header image of this post). To my right is our pet rabbit Fluffy who enjoys lounging and chewing wires behind the television cabinet. To my left are the men that come to pump water at our water tank. Beneath me is the turkey – a Christmas gift, and behind me is my favourite place to take photos on the balcony. It’s about 35℃ and NEPA just “took light”* so we’re using a very noisy generator to power the house.
*NEPA is the former name of the organisation that governed the use of electricity in Nigeria… I believe it has since been privatised and renamed but alas, everyone still calls them NEPA.
Unsurprisingly, like the serial-wedding-guest-attender that I am… I came to Nigeria for my cousin’s wedding. Nigerian (Yoruba) weddings are a lot of fun by nature, but a Nigerian wedding in Nigeria is a completely different experience. Everything is just so much more authentic and done to a larger scale. I’ve been to my fair share of weddings over the years but this was by far the largest. Visually, the wedding reception was beautiful – a sea of yellow and teal outfits, with around 600 (probably more) guests in attendance! There were live music performances, African dancers, food and drink in abundance and most importantly – I got to see some family members that I haven’t seen in years…
I also had the pleasure of dancing and reading “The Letter “* at my cousin’s traditional wedding. When my cousin, the bride, asked me to read it a few months ago, I accepted although I wasn’t too familiar with the purpose of these letters. But now I know, so FYI:
*Yoruba engagement letters include a Proposal Letter and an Acceptance Letter.
The groom’s family writes a Proposal Letter to the bride’s family asking for her hand in marriage. Whilst the Acceptance Letter is a reply to the Proposal Letter. The letters can be on a plaque, certificate or a scroll and they can be as simple or elaborate as the families want it to be.
It seems that nowadays, many families take the Letter to be professionally made.
In true Yoruba tradition, as I danced up to the front to read the Proposal Letter in front of both families, I was showered with money! Here’s some footage recorded by my Mother lol (excuse the quality):
My outfit for the traditional wedding – the sleeves were detachable, which was so useful in the heat!
I can smell that it’s time to eat now so I’m going to leave it here – I just wanted to update you guys and say Hello from Lagos, Nigeria 🙂
By God’s grace, I’ll be back soon. In the meantime, you can follow me on Instagram: @wunms to see what I’ve been up to.
“This is the day the Lord has made; we will rejoice and be glad in it” – Psalm 118:24
God bless you!